Thursday, February 18, 2010

Problems Opening M.S. Office files

Many people are experiencing issues when trying to open files that were created in M.S. Office. There are 2 sides to this issue.
If you are the creator of files, say your resume and you want to send them to somebody, try following these rules:
  • Try to find out what program the receiver of the files is going to use to open the files. The reason is simple. Microsoft has a few versions of their office suite and there are incompatibilities.
  • Save the files in the format that matches the target systems office product. (Office 2003. etc.)
  • If there is a problem, save and send it in an earlier version. (Office 97 instead of Office 2003)
  • Caution: saving a Word file(.doc) into a text file(.txt) will lose all formatting(fonts, color, etc.).
  • Consider using the .RTF(rich text format). It's kind of dumbing down if you have Office, but it's kind of universal and if the target system has Windows it will be opened by Wordpad.(everyone has it)
If you're on the recieving end here are a few tips and links:
  • Know the programs that are installed on your computer. This will possibly avoid any confusion.
  • If you are going to have to change(edit) the files that are sent to you, you will need an Office program. Consider buying M.S. Office or using OpenOffice. It's free and on the Kiss List.
  • If you're just receiving files and just need to look at them, go to Microsoft. Word, Excel and PowerPoint viewers are available and free of charge. (okay, there's a problem with this technique because my links from the kisslist won't work and curiously neither will microsofts, generated from there own website! Maybe they'll fix this, but I don't know). Oohh! I found it by searching with, you guessed it GOOGLE! Excel, Word and PowerPoint ! If these links break in the future just go to GOOGLE and search for "word viewer" etc.
In closing, remember to be careful when working with files that are important. Make a copy of the original file and open it with an untested program. That way you always have the original. Understand file formats. Files ending in .txt , .doc and .rtf are word processor files, files ending in .xls , .xlsx and .wks are spread sheet files. This link may help with understanding formats.

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